Cumulus Dives into Digital Audio as Partner in Rdio. Cumulus Media enters in to a partnership with Pulsar Media, parent company of three-year-old digital music service Rdio. The companies say in a press release the deal involves a “powerful content, promotion and advertising partnership that provides listeners with a one-stop solution for their audio needs while offering advertisers new opportunities to engage with consumers.” The strategic partnership will provide Cumulus with a financial interest in the larger digital music ecosystem and allows Rdio to launch free, ad-supported products in the United States while accelerating the activation of new users and subscribers. Cumulus will obtain a significant equity stake in Pulser Media, Rdio’s parent company, in exchange for exclusive content, media and on-air promotional commitments over a five year period. In addition, Rdio will leverage the Cumulus sales infrastructure to monetize its upcoming ad-supported free products, including music on-demand, custom playlists and exclusive content curated by Cumulus. Rdio is the digital music service founded by the co-creator of Skype that is currently available in over 30 countries. Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey says, “This partnership leverages our premier broadcast and content assets along with Rdio’s acclaimed digital audio platform — enabling consumers to listen to whatever they want, whenever they want, however they want.” Rdio CEO Drew Larner adds, “We are thrilled to be partnering with Cumulus and their robust network of radio stations and premium content. This monumental deal is the first time a digital and a broadcast platform have come together in this way and we’re eager to bring the Rdio experience to the greater Cumulus listening audience.”
Jerry Sharell Stable After Being Held Hostage, Stabbed. The Los Angeles radio and music communities remain stunned this morning following news that broke last night involving former five-year (1987 – 1992) Westwood One senior vice president of talent marketing Jerry Sharell, who was reportedly held hostage and attacked in Woodland Hills (San Fernando Valley – Los Angeles). Sharell was with his girlfriend when her ex-husband was said to have arrived with flowers and a machete at approximately 8:00 am yesterday (Sunday, 9/15). He apparently held the couple hostage for more than three hours. “Sometime during that time, [Sharell] had been stabbed repeatedly,” Los Angeles Police Department sergeant Jeff Nuttal told KABC-TV, Los Angeles. The woman was injured when she tried to halt the attack, but was able to escape and called authorities. Police say that owing to a history of domestic violence, she had a restraining order against her ex-husband. Sharell, who hosts “Sundays with Sinatra” on Los Angeles public outlet KKJZ “KJazz” – is in critical, but stable condition at Northridge Medical Center with injuries to his head and neck. The unidentified attacker turned the weapon on himself; his condition is listed as critical as well but both he and Sharell are expected to survive. The alleged attacker is in police custody at the hospital. Sharell was co-executive producer of Ronnie Milsap‘s 2004 Grammy-nominated “Just for a Thrill” album. He began his career as a Mercury Records promotion rep, before joining Main Line Distributors in 1962. Sharell held executive positions at Buddah Records and A&M Records. He has helped the careers of artists such as Herb Alpert, Jackson Browne, Carpenters, Cars, Joe Cocker, Eagles, Curtis Mayfield, Joni Mitchell, Queen, Linda Ronstadt, and Carly Simon. He is past president of City of Hope, Entertainment Division, and is on the advisory board of MusiCares. From 2002 – 2010, he was president/CEO for the non-profit Society of Singers. Sharell’s wife of 48 years, Joanne, recently died after losing her fight against cancer.
Duane Doobie Comments on the Dangers of “Baggage” that we Accumulate Along the Road of Life. Shocked by today’s tragic story about the knife assault on industry veteran Jerry Sharell, RadioInfo music editor/director Duane Doobie pens a compelling observation about the social and family complications “adults” face as we get older. He also writes about something far more positive – exciting new music worthy of the attention of radio programmers. To read the Doob’s latest, click here.
Jack Diamond Named AM Drive Host at ‘Lite FM’ in Miami; Julie Guy Joins as Co-Host. Lincoln Financial Media announces veteran broadcast personality Jack Diamond is host of the new morning drive program on the company’s AC WLYF, Miami “101.5 LITE FM” with Julie Guy to work as his co-host. He succeeds Ellen Jaffe who moves to anchoring afternoon drive. Diamond comes to “LITE FM” following nearly 24 years of success at WRQX, Washington. Director of programming and operations Rob Sidney states, “Jack Diamond is a master entertainer, engaging each listener over-the-air, in person and through all forms of interactive media. His experience, showmanship and passion reflect the best of what ‘LITE FM’ has built over four decades. And I’m thrilled to have Jack kicking off LITE’s next era of success.” Julie Guy has spent more than two decades at top-ranked contemporary music stations in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. For the past 11 years, she anchored “Those Two Girls in the Morning” at Cox Media Group’s crosstown WFLC. Sidney states, “We’ve long admired Julie Guy’s ability to entertain and relate to her listeners. She’s been a formidable competitor and we’re much happier to welcome her enthusiasm and talent to the team at ‘LITE FM.’”
Tyler Reese New PM Drive Host at WSIX, Nashville. In addition to hosting the afternoon show at Clear Channel’s country WSIX, Nashville “The Big 98,” Tyler Reese will also serve as assistant program director and music director. He comes to Nashville from the company’s country WKKT, Charlotte “Kat Country” where he was music director and evening personality. Reese takes over for Anthony Allen (a.k.a. Ant Man), who jumped to CC’s country KNIX, Phoenix where is APD/MD. WSIX PD Michael Bryan states, “We’re very excited to add Tyler to our tremendous team at ‘The Big 98’ — he is simply the perfect fit. His extreme passion for country music, strong Nashville relationships and ability to connect with an audience has earned him this very coveted position. ‘The Big 98’ just got bigger, again.”
Clear Channel Adds Former VEVO Exec to Corporate Staff. Clear Channel Media and Entertainment names Derrin Woodhouse to national entertainment director for national programming platforms position. In this newly created position, Woodhouse will assist with the planning and executing of the company’s events, including the iHeartRadio Music Festival, Pool Party, Album Release Parties, B2B events and more. He will be based New York City and will report to Darren Pfeffer. Most recently, Woodhouse was director of marketing & strategic partnerships at VEVO where he created and produced hundreds of events.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Melissa Moore will fill the vacant midday slot at Lincoln Financial Media’s country KYGO, Denver beginning October 1. Moore comes from Way Media where she was the afternoon drive talent for the religious broadcaster’s 100 affiliates…..Ric Knight is doing double duty for Columbus Radio Group’s AC WSNY, Columbus, Ohio where he’ll host PM drive on “Sunny 95” and handle morning drive on the company’s classic hits WNND “Rewind 103.5 and 104.3.”…..Bend Radio Group moves Lola Montgomery from the morning show at AC KMGX, Bend, Oregon “The New Mix 100.7” to the company’s country sister KSJJ “Country 103” where she’ll host the midday show.
CHRIS PENDL: Help Your Best Clients Thrive in Local Searches. Bonneville Seattle creative director Chris Pendl writes that some of radio’s best advertisers can be the most difficult to find when it comes to mobile-based local searches. What’s more, there can be a huge difference between how one of your clients rates on a desktop search and where they rate – if at all – on a mobile search. Pendl notes, “With smartphone ownership now 56% among American adults, searching on smartphones is increasingly becoming a part of the consumer’s journey before making a purchase. A recent local search study, revealed there’s an 87% increase in local searches via mobile apps. It is in this mobile space where some of radio’s best advertisers, local and regional businesses, have poor visibility and are often non-existent.” Pendl offers simple solutions to help your valuable advertisers appear where they should in mobile searches. Read his column here.
CBS Radio Partners with BBR Music Group for ‘Triple 7s’ Promotion. The contest begins today as CBS Radio teams with BBR Music Group to offer the grand prize winner and a guest the opportunity to see “7 shows in 7 nights in 7 cities.” CBS Radio’s country stations are launching a national multi-market promotion which will drive listeners to Radio.com to enter-to-win their way onto a private jet for a week-long, music-jammed journey around the U.S. to see seven shows during seven back-to-back nights in seven different cities. The grand prize winner, along with his or her guest, will also have the opportunity to meet each artist. The contest winner’s jet setting, whirlwind week includes: Stop #1: Rachel Farley — 10/21 in Nashville; Stop #2: Parmalee — 10/22 in Asheville, NC; Stop #3: Randy Houser — 10/23 in Charleston, SC; Stop #4: Jason Aldean — 10/24 in Memphis; Stop #5: Thompson Square — 10/25 in Tampa; Stop #6: Dustin Lynch — 10/26 in Bossier City, Losuisiana; and Stop #7: Joe Nichols — 10/27 in New Orleans. The contest is airing on CBS stations: KFRG, Riverside; KILT, Houston; KMLE, Phoenix; KMNB, Minneapolis; KMPS, Seattle; KNCI, Sacramento; WDSY, Pittsburgh; WQYK, Tampa; WSOC, Charlotte; WUSN, Chicago; and WYCD, Detroit.
Clear Channel Adds ‘ON with Mario Lopez’ to Hot AC ‘Star 94.1 San Diego.’ The Premiere Networks-syndicated Mario Lopez is added to the evening slot at Clear Channel’s hot AC KMYI “Star 94.1” airing from 8:00 pm to 12:00 midnight. The “ON with Mario Lopez” show – hosted by the star of TV’s “Extra” – is music intensive with a heavy dose of entertainment stories and celebrity news.
Cumulus Media Flips WRQQ, Baton Rouge to Classic Hits. Cumulus Media’s WRQQ, Baton Rouge will go commercial free for the next two weeks as it flips from adult hits to classic hits and takes on the brand “Classic Hits 103.3.” In a statement, the company says the station will feature artists including “Elton John, Journey, Fleetwood Mac, Heart, Foreigner, The Doobie Brothers, Steve Miller Band, The Beatles, Steely Dan, The Rolling Stones, John Mellencamp, Santana, James Taylor, Chicago, Bruce Springsteen and many more!”